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In this new look at one of the most influential presidential addresses ever delivered, historian Jeffrey A. Engel joins together with five other leading scholars to explore how each of Roosevelt's freedoms evolved over time, for Americans and for the wider world. They examine the ways in which the word "freedom" has been used by Americans and others, across decades and the political spectrum. However, they are careful to note that acceptance of the freedoms has been far from universal--even within the United States. Freedom from want, especially, has provoked clashes between those in favor of an expanded welfare state and proponents of limited government from the 1940s to the present day.
In this sweeping look at the way American conceptions of freedom have evolved over time,The Four Freedoms brings to light a new portrait of who Americans were in 1941 and who they have become today in their own eyes-and in the eyes of the entire world.
Jeffrey A. Engel is founding director of the Center for Presidential History at Southern Methodist University. Engel has authored or edited eight books on American foreign policy, including Cold War at 30,000 Feet: The Anglo-American Fight for Aviation Supremacy, The China Diary of George H.W. Bush: The Making of a Global President, The Fall of the Berlin Wall: The Revolutionary Legacy of 1989, and Into the Desert: Reflections on the Gulf War.
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